“Babka” means grandmother in many Eastern European languages. The traditional eggy sweet bread has different iterations throughout Europe and the Middle East, but often sees chocolate or cinnamon spread over layers of dough which are then rolled and twisted tightly. It emerges at various times of the year, especially at Easter in countries like Ukraine. Sydney’s Babka Baby has brought New York-style babka to the southern hemisphere. Grab their rich, spongey babka at Double Bay markets each Thursday, EQ Markets on Wednesdays, or Kings Cross Market on a Saturday. Various locations, Sydney – visit their website for more.
The Good Filo342 Rocky Point Rd, Ramsgate
Third generation Greek baker Kiriakos Metaxotos opened The Good Filo last year in Sydney’s Ramsgate to the delight of many. You can bet on the bakery-cum-café to be cranking out traditional Orthodox Easter sweets such as orange and sesame seed-laden koulourakia, chocolate and traditional tsoureki. There’s also plenty of loukoumades, baklava, bogatsa and hot cross buns on hand, just to add to the festivities.
Smoking Gun Bagels129-129A Cathedral St, Woolloomooloo
The Yiddish bread rings loved the world over have become a mainstay in local grocers and supermarket aisles nowadays. Sydney’s artisan bagel-makers Smoking Gun have rolled out their hot cross bagels once more. Version 2.0 of the hot cross bagel has a lighter, fluffier centre thanks to the addition of eggs, milk and butter, along with orange puree, raisins, candied orange peel, freshly grated nutmeg, cinnamon and clove. They’re finished with a homemade maple glaze, paying homage to the company’s Canadian roots. Chocolate lovers will be happy to hear that Smoking Gun has also teamed with Callebaut Australia this year on a choc cross bagel. Expect plenty of spice and blue ribbon Callebaut chocolate in place of the fruit. Mercy.
Purveyors of the most famous ricotta cake in town know a thing or two about Italian celebration cakes. This Easter, Papa’s are baking a conventional raspberry jam crostata and a less conventional Nutella version for those partial to a choc-fix. The latticed pies, which are enjoyed both hot or cold, are often baked at Easter time. They’re available in store and to order as of now. Located across various locations – visit their website for store details.
The Grumpy Baker
These Sydney artisan bakers with Israeli heritage will be churning out their famous glazed Nutella babka again this Easter, plus their fluffy, sticky, traditional and chocolate hot cross buns. The babka is usually pretty quick to go – run, don’t walk, people. Located at Vaucluse, Maroubra, Castle Cove, Newtown, Bellevue Hill, Waverton. Visit their website for store details.
Shortstop (Sydney & Melbourne)12 Sutherland Street, Melbourne; Shop 3/23 Barangaroo Avenue, Barangaroo
Between April 10 and April 22 (Easter Monday), Shortstop is making glazed hot cross doughnuts to sate an Easter sweet tooth. The yeasty treats are available to pre-order for both pick-up and delivery, right now.
South Melbourne MarketCorner of Coventry & Cecil Streets, South Melbourne
Orthodox Easter calls for koulourakia – those crisp, orange-scented Greek Easter cookies. Emerald Deli’s South Melbourne Market stall has plenty of the tea-dunkers on hand, plus those snowy kourabiethes to gift and to gorge on. Otherwise, head to Rita’s Coffee & Nuts to break the Lenten fast with tsoureki, that braided sweetbread hiding a coveted red egg that emerges at this time of year in Greece. Get market times here.
Queen Vic MarketQueen Street, Melbourne
From The Hellenic Deli’s tsoureki Easter bread to fresh bagels and vegan hot cross buns at Andrew’s Bread Shop, plus traditional Ukrainian egg decorating at The Eggporium and custom-made Easter cakes at The Bread Box, the Queen Vic Market has Easter bellies covered this season. Go here for their Easter trading hours.